TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — NJ TRANSIT said Tuesday that fare hikes or service “adjustments” were a possibility as the transportation agency deals with a major budget gap.
In a statement Wednesday, NJ TRANSIT said: “We are developing options for the Governor’s consideration to help us close a budget gap and will be putting everything on the table, including fare and service adjustments. Right now we are working with the state budget numbers as we develop and finalize our own operating plan for the fiscal year.”
NJ TRANSIT Spokeswoman Nancy Snyder said right now, they’ve found over $40 million in cuts and that everything is on the table, including fare hikes and service cuts.
“Unfortunately, we are still faced with an $80 million projected budget gap,” she told WCBS 880’s Levon Putney on Thursday.
But Lackawanna Coalition Chairman David Alan said transit riders are bearing too much of the burden to balance budgets.
“I am so tired,” he said. “No politician ever asks that of motorists.”
Alan said the last gas tax was in the late ’80s.
Tri-State Transportation’s New Jersey Senior Analyst Janna Chernetz said this will lead to more transit riders with cars choosing to drive.
In announcing his $33.8 billion budget for the next fiscal year, Gov. Chris Christie said NJ TRANSIT was considering “a range of savings and revenue-generating operations” that could include the first fare hike since 2010, NJ.com reported.
The budget cut the state transportation allocation 8.4 percent, from $1.4 billion for Fiscal Year 2015, to $1.293 billion for Fiscal Year 2016, the publication reported.